Trump’s Divisive Presidency Reshapes a Key Part of His Private Business

In Conflict of Interest, How We Behave On

In all, Trump owns 12 golf courses in the United States — 11 on the East Coast, and one outside Los Angeles. He owns at least a partial stake in four hotels, in the District, Chicago, Las Vegas and New York’s SoHo. And he owns Mar-a-Lago and a winery resort outside Charlottesville.

To assess the state of Trump’s hospitality business, The Washington Post reviewed public records, data released by the Trump Organization and social-media postings from Trump properties. The Post identified a sample of more than 200 groups that had rented out meeting rooms or golf courses at a Trump property since 2014.

Of those groups, 85 are no longer Trump customers. Many said they left for nonpolitical reasons. But 30 told The Post that they had left because of Trump’s political career.

. . .

But it did show, clearly, that one part of that business is thriving. The business of political events.

For instance, in the 2014 election cycle, before Trump jumped into the presidential race, nine federal Republican candidates and committees reported patronizing Trump-owned properties.

Altogether, these groups spent $32,499 over two years, less than Trump’s clubs could take in from a single run-of-the-mill golf tournament.

This year, the figures are different.

At least 27 federal political committees — including Trump’s reelection campaign — have flocked to his properties. They’ve spent $363,701 in just seven months, according to campaign-finance reports. In addition, the Republican Governors Association paid more than $408,000 to hold an event this spring at the Trump National Doral golf resort, according to tax filings, a gathering the group said was booked back in February 2015.

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